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Weekly Fitness Victories - 9/22 - 9/26

9/26/2014 *Sara-Marie* 1 Comments

This week started out a little rough. Due to some unforeseen circumstances, I couldn't make it into the box (Crossfit word for gym) on my regular training days. So instead of working out 4 times this week, I only got in 3. But they were all really tough workouts so I'm not complaining!

Current week: 9/22/14 - 9/26/14 



This workout was a toughie. It was a chipper which means it was high reps of a lot of different movements. I'm most proud of doing 80 sit-ups. Since having a baby, my core has been really weak. When I first got back to working out in January, I could barely do 5 sit-ups without having to take a break. Wednesday, I did the 80 reps in sets of 20 - that's progress! 

I hate running. Whenever there's a run portion of a workout, I always do run/walk intervals. But during Thursday's AMRAP which included a 100m sprint every round, I did not walk at all. I ran the whole time for every round. 100m may not sound like a lot, but when you're tired from doing all the other parts of the workout, you can easily get in your head about needing to walk to catch your breath. At least that's what happens to me! But I pushed through those thoughts and I'm proud of myself. 

Hero WODs are always over the top hard. They are supposed to be - how else can we honor our military, law enforcement, and firefighters who have given it all?! Hotshots 19 honors the nineteen members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots firefighting team who tragically lost their lives on June 30, 2013, while fighting a fire in Yarnell, Arizona. 

I took my time with this long workout and I'm just glad that I finished it. I might have wanted to quit a thousand times, almost threw up during round 5, and had to walk more than run, but ladies and gentlemen I finished it. Took me 52:28, but I finished! 

So here's to another week of pushing myself to new limits! The weekend calls for some rest and I hope to be right back at it on Monday. Share some of your fitness victories this week, big or small, in the comments below! 



Spinach and Prosciutto Egg Nest Recipe

9/24/2014 *Sara-Marie* 1 Comments

I've been trying to include some more greens in my diet, particularly at breakfast. A quick google search and you will find all the reasons why dark greens like spinach and kale are nutritional powerhouses. 

Did you know that spinach is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, manganese, folate, magnesium, iron, copper, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, and vitamin C? It's also a good source of protein - who knew?! 

So here's a simple yet delicious way to enjoy your greens first thing in the AM, but don't feel like you can't just as easily prepare this for lunch or dinner. 

Here's the play by play: 
By hand, rip up 4-5 slices of prosciutto.

Add those prosciutto pieces to a hot cast iron skillet, that's been coated with a bit of cooking fat (olive oil, coconut oil, ghee, etc)

Once the prosciutto starts to get crispy, add in 2-3 heaping handfuls of spinach into your pan, along with another small drizzle of olive oil, a capful of apple cider vinegar, a dash of salt (remember the prosciutto is salty), and a little black pepper.

After continuously stirring the spinach and prosciutto, make a well once the spinach has started to wilt.

Add in your eggs...

...and cover! The steam will cook the tops of the eggs and finish cooking the spinach.
After a couple minutes, your meal is done!
I'm a busy, working mama so I just ate it straight out of the pan! One less dish to clean!

Spinach and Prosciutto Egg Nest Recipe

Recipe Ingredients 
  • 4-5 slices of thinly sliced prosciutto
  • 2-3 heaping handfuls of spinach 
  • 2 eggs
  • capful of apple cider vinegar
  • pinch of salt and pepper 
  • cooking fat for pan (olive oil, ghee, coconut oil, etc)
Recipe Directions
  1. Heat a cast iron pan over medium heat.
  2. By hand, rip up 4-5 slices of prosciutto so that you have smaller pieces.
  3. Add those prosciutto pieces to a hot cast iron skillet, that's been coated with a bit of cooking fat, and crisp up for a minute or two.
  4. Once the prosciutto starts to get crispy, add in 2-3 heaping handfuls of spinach into your pan, along with another small drizzle of olive oil, a capful of apple cider vinegar, a dash of salt (remember the prosciutto is salty), and a little black pepper.
  5. After continuously stirring the spinach and prosciutto, make a well once the spinach has started to wilt.  Add in your eggs and cover the pan. The steam will cook the tops of your eggs and finish cooking the spinach. Use a clear top if you can, so you can see when the eggs are done to your liking without having to prematurely let out the steam.
  6. Once done to your liking, uncover and enjoy! I eat this right out of the pan - no need to dirty another dish! 

How do you like to incorporate greens or other vegetables first thing in the morning? Leave a comment below! 



Paleo Baby: Teaching my daughter the love of real food

9/23/2014 *Sara-Marie* 2 Comments

There WERE raspberries and coconut cream in that bowl :)

Ever since I learned of the Whole30/Paleo lifestyle, I knew that I wanted to raise my future children to not only eat but love real food. A little over a year later, we welcomed our little Paleo Baby into the world and we have remained committed to only feeding her nutrient-dense foods.

We have been blessed with a great breastfeeding relationship which is still going strong at almost 11 months old. Isabelle still gets a majority of her nutrition from Mama's Milk, but since about 4.5 months old (which is early), I began to introduce wholesome, real foods into her diet.

I originally wanted to wait until 6 months before introducing solid food, as recommended by many. However, when my child started to make chewing motions with her mouth as she watched us eat and started to swipe at my dinner plate, and cry when we didn't let her have any, I knew it was time to do something. I didn't want to give her the typical baby cereals since I knew from my research that it wasn't nutritionally necessary and could often cause digestion issues. So I started out with mashed sweet potato and Isabelle responded really well. She even grabbed the baby spoon and fed herself that night - this girl was READY. If you don't believe me, check out this photo documenting her first real food experience:

"This stuff is so good!"
From 4-6 months I kept things very simple and only introduced sweet potato, avocado, and banana. I would often puree these items with breast milk to aid in digestion. I also made sure that everything she consumed was organic or locally grown/raised. 

At around 6 months, I started introducing her to more purees including butternut squash, applesauce, zucchini, and blueberries. She loved them all.

At around 7 months, I started incorporating some "babyled weaning" ideas and started giving her chunks of real food and letting her self feed. I found this to really help her motor skills and food became a fun, learning experience for everyone. Up until now, we barely spoon feed her anything. We put food on her high-chair tray and let her go to town! It gets messy, but I love watching her discover new foods. I think that most of my pictures of Isabelle are of her in her high-chair, covered in food. 
Blueberries and Watermelon

At almost 11 months old, Isabelle pretty much eats whatever we eat. I no longer spend time making "baby food" as I did in the earlier months. Whatever I am eating, which typically follows a paleo template, is what Isabelle gets to eat as well. Some of her favorites include:
  • Avocado - her absolute favorite
  • Olives
  • Coconut milk, cream, butter
  • Raspberries 
  • Blueberries
  • Watermelon
  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Ground beef
  • Shredded chicken/turkey 
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Sweet potato
  • Butternut squash
  • Plantains
  • Banana
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli 
  • Spinach (in the form of a green smoothie)
To this day, Isabelle has not met a food she does not like! Sometimes she'll make a funny face if her raspberries or blueberries are too tart - but she'll still eat them.
I love avocado!

With all that being said, here is a list of food groups we are choosing NOT to include in Isabelle's diet:

GRAINS - with the exception of an occasional serving of rice
Why? Here's a snippet from "The Grain Manifesto" found on the Whole30 website:
In a comparison* done in our New York Times bestselling book, It Starts With Food, a daily diet based on “healthy” whole grains provided more than three times the sugar and sodium as a diet featuring vegetables and fruit, but provided less fiber, potassium, and substantially less magnesium, iron, zinc, and vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, and K.
So I rather fill ALL of our plates with a variety of fruits and vegetables instead of bread, cereal, or pasta. 

Because the over consumption of sugar is just plain bad. Anything and everything that comes in a box these days has sugar, or some form of science experiment sugar, as an ingredient. Again, I don't want that in my body, let alone my daughter's little vessel.

Cow's milk is designed for baby cows. Human milk is designed for baby humans. Once Isabelle weans off of breast milk, I will most likely continue to pump and have her drink breastmilk from a cup or have her continue to drink coconut milk. So many people don't tolerate dairy well - including myself - so I just don't see the need to introduce it to her. I may one day consider a raw, organic, local source of cheese or yogurt, but for right now she's dairy free. If you're concerned about calcium, you should know that dairy is not the only good source of calcium. You can find calcium in vegetables (greens), meats, nuts, and seeds.

Why give my child fake food, when she loves real food which is much more nutritious and delicious? Will my child one day have a piece of candy? Eat a piece of cake? Of course, but they most certainly won't be common occurrences and won't even be valued as a treat.

It's so easy to get concerned about whether or not your child is getting enough nutrients, but by looking at the assortment of different fruits, vegetables, and protein Isabelle IS eating on a regular basis (versus what she isn't), I feel confident that she's getting enough of all the right stuff. Plus she's a good weight, good height, has soft and clear skin, healthy hair and nails, and is overall a very happy and healthy baby. (THANK YOU JESUS!)  
Raspberries and coconut cream - another favorite combo

I know this is also setting her up for good eating habits in the future. She does not snack all day on Gerber puffs or other sugary processed carbs, so she won't feel the need to constantly snack on empty calories when she's older (a habit I still struggle with).  She is being exposed to many different, nutrient-dense, and flavorful foods that will hopefully give her the confidence to always try new things - a behavior that could benefit her in numerous ways.

All in all, the purpose of this post is to share how we are feeding our little one and what our experience has been like so far. I hope this can be encouraging to other mothers out there that would like to implement more healthy eating habits into their home. It can be done and I certainly recommend it!


Spaghetti squash, pumpkin, and ground beef - yum!


Weekly Fitness Victories - 9/15 - 9/19

9/16/2014 *Sara-Marie* 0 Comments

At least for me, it's easy to get down on myself for not being able to do more when it comes to my Crossfit workouts. I get frustrated when I have to walk instead of run, when I have to use less weight than my peers, or when I can't get over my fears to just jump on a box. 

But I do know that I'm getting stronger, faster, and better everyday so I'm going to start a blog series that will document at least one victory from each of my workouts in a given week. 

Focusing on the positive is the only way to live life! 

Current Week: 9/15 - 9/19

Monday: I hit a new PR! 

We worked on deadlifts, and I increased my 1 rep max by 40 lbs! My new PR is 175# and my 3RM is 135# which was my old 1RM! 

Tuesday: I did two double unders in a row! 

During one of the EMOMs, I actually did a double under! And then I did another one - 2 in a row! I was so excited I dropped my rope, hugged my coach, and then went back to the WOD. I didn't get another one after that, but it's progress! 

Wednesday: I did 50 thrusters at 55#! 

Typically, during a WOD with thrusters, I've only been able to successfully complete it with a naked 35# bar. But not today! I did all reps at 55#.My first set was 17 reps unbroken - I guess there is no going back! 

Thursday: REST DAY

Friday: HERO WOD FRIDAY - Whitten

Just showing up was my victory today. While the WOD called for 5 rounds of a bunch of stuff I don't like (burpees and running blah!), I did a very scaled version of 3 rounds. I could have stayed home today, but I showed up and did something. I can't be mad about that! 

Share some of your fitness victories this week, big or small, in the comments below! 



Whole30 - Round 4!

9/16/2014 *Sara-Marie* 0 Comments

It's been 2 years since I've discovered the Whole30 and it has most definitely changed my eating habits for good. We eat paleo style and Whole30 meals the majority of the time, but do allow indulgences as we see fit. 

However the last couple of weeks were a bit more than just an indulgence - I was stress eating and ended up having a carbopalooza. I immediately gained 5 lbs of bloat and just felt horrible. So with that being said, I'm doing my 4th official Whole30. No slips, no mistakes, no excuses, for 30 days. Just 100% real food, 100% of the time. I will be documenting more of my meals on my Instagram account (smpons) so please feel free to follow me on there. I also hope to post some new recipes on the blog as well. 

Hope this motivates someone else! Change your life in 30 days! 

Yesterday, 9/15/14 was Day 1.  Especially since I now do  Crossfit 4 times a week, I'm expecting some great results within the next 30 days. 

If you'd like to join me, leave a comment below!